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337

"Maybe," Mr. Munn said meditatively—"maybe he just
dn't want to see you get caught."

" Hell," Doctor MacDonald exclaimed, " he ain't a farmer,
lat does he care?"

" Maybe he just cared," Mr. Munn answered. " Maybe he's
damned fool."

" Damned fool is right," Doctor MacDonald laughed. He
sxed his long legs, rumpling the patchwork quilt on which
j lay. " I reckon he was taking a chance on his job, calling
e."

"Yes," Mr. Munn said, "he was." Yes, he thought. All
ose years dragging his club foot round town, trying to sell a
tie life insurance or hail insurance or fire insurance to
;ople. Hanging round groups of men at the post office or
ie depot or on the street corner, trying to get up nerve to
y to somebody, "I wonder if you'd be interested in some

surance, now I was just wondering-----" And then stop-

ng, waiting for the man to answer, " No." And going home
: night to the little house at the edge of town. Nobody else
id been in that house, not for years, not since his old mother,
[rs. Smullin, died, people said. Going home, and lighting a
mp and pulling down all the shades, and eating something
I the kitchen table. Something he'd bought and taken
ome in a paper sack. All that before getting the job, God
[lew how, at the courthouse. Now he could sit round there
i the afternoons and evenings, listening to the men talk. He
idn't have to try to work himself up to say, "I wonder if

Du'd be interested, I was just wondering-----"  He could just

ang round and listen, and not worry.   Except for being a
amned fool, and making that telephone call.
"He came mighty near waiting too long; another five
linutes and they'd have had me," Doctor MacDonald was
lying.

"Yes," Mr. Munn rejoined. Old Lew Smullins had waited.
Ee thought of old Lew Smullins—or was he old; you couldn't
ill, he'd always been old, or on the edge of things like old
eople—he thought of Lew Smullins waiting, trying to make